Name: Adam Bernard Home: Fairfield, Connecticut, United States About Me: Entertainment journalist with 20 years of experience. Supporter of indie music. Lover of day baseball, and B-movies. Part time ninja. Kicked cancer’s ass. My memoir, ChemBro, is out now!
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This week’s NYC Scene Report features a soulful single from Arum Rae, an alt-rock tune from Anna Altman, a trip to “Malibu” with indie rockers Rips, and a 420 friendly track from hip-hop trio Royal Clutch.
* Big, huge, soaring, soul. Those were the first thoughts that came to mind when I heard Arum Rae’s “Wasn’t My Time” for the first time.
In a statement, the Brooklyn-based indie soul artist explained the lyrical content of the song, saying, “I was actually in a relationship with somebody who survived his addiction. We were having a conversation, and he told me if he used one more time, he would die. The song’s message is, ‘I made it out. I actually overcame that.’ Not everyone makes it through. It doesn’t happen to everybody. Addiction’s always been close to me. I can’t say I’m an angel, but it’s not my struggle.”
“Wasn’t My Time” is off of Arum’s upcoming debut album, due out later this year, and you can check out the video right here.
* New column favorites Anna Altman released their full length debut, Freightliner, last month, and the latest single off the album is the fantastic “American Gothic.”
A new single from Anna Altman is always good news. The even better news is that the NYC-based alt-rockers’ album was released as part of Exploding In Sound Records' newly launched tape club, so if you still have a tape deck in your car, you can cruise around to this one.
Yes, your favorite writer is one of those people who still has a tape deck in his car. Send me your cassette releases if you want that good “going on a suburban drive” promo!
Also, click play on “American Gothic,” because Ann Altman sounds good coming out of any set of speakers.
* Going to Malibu sounds like a really fun idea, but if you’re like me, and can’t immediately go jetting off, Rips has a two and a half minute vacation for you with their latest single, titled “Malibu Entropy.”
“Malibu Entropy” is off of the Brooklyn-based band’s upcoming self-titled debut album, which is due out in June. The album will reportedly feature a sound that channels classic ‘70s bands, while still maintaining a modern vibe.
Give “Malibu Entropy” a spin, and get that vacation you deserve … even if it’s just for a few minutes.
* It’s always 420 somewhere, right? That’s definitely the case for Brooklyn-based hip-hop trio Royal Clutch, whose latest single, “Weed Again,” has a pretty simple concept – “It’s the feeling of not having weed, and then having it,” rapper Kos explains.
Kos continued, saying, “We wanted to give the listener that feeling of copping a fresh ‘O’ for the weekend, smoking with your homies, or your girl, and not having to worry about running out, or worry about anything but the joy of getting high and chilling.”
Royal Clutch’s Jase adds, “‘Weed Again’ falls in line with the sense of us creating a soundscape similar to the late ‘90s and early 2000s, the time period of music when we were growing up. We flipped a D'Angelo song where he professes his love for marijuana, and we did something similar, but in our own flavor.”
Royal Clutch’s full length debut album, How To Say Hello To Insanity, which will also reportedly address mental health issues, is due out later this year, but you can get high to “Weed Again” right now.
For more of the best of NYC’s indie music scene, come back next Wednesday, and check out the archives for previous columns.